Today we decided to rent a scooter, dress like a local (!) and drive up to the North of Phu Quoc to check out a resort hotel where we were planning to stay for a few days. According to Google maps the way to the resort takes around one hour by scooter. Well, after almost 2 hours we still hadn’t arrived as we got lost a few times on the way and then stopped at pretty places to have a break and take some pictures. The further north you get the less developed it looks like. At some point we found ourselves parallel to the beach on an off-road path and didn’t pass another scooter for probably 20min (if you have been to Vietnam you know that this does not happen often!).

Phu Quoc Vietnam Beach

Phu Quoc North Beach Vietnam Travel

Rent a Vespa in Phu Quoc First Day Vietnam Travel

Dressing like a local in Vietnam

Phu Quoc Riding around in the Vespa

Vietnam Phu Quoc North Riding Tour

After driving around for quite some time we got hungry and stopped at a street food place on the road. The place was run by two lovely Vietnamese ladies who agreed to pose for our photo :) I was so happy to finally get some food and I really enjoyed their Banh Mi!

Street Food in Vietnam

Vietname Lady Selling Banh Mi in Phu Quoc - Street Food

Vietnamese Street Food. Phu Quoc Vietnam Travel

Phu Quoc Street Food

Continuing our trip we crossed a little beach village which was untouched by tourist shops and hotels. Kids were happily playing the streets, dogs were (well fed) and chasing after each other between the trees, and adults were sitting together chatting and chilling out. There were also some fishermen in boats and little boys playing on the beach. It was a very idyllic atmosphere (well, except the garbage on the beach) and everyone was super friendly. All the little kids actually waved at us when we were driving past – so so so cute :)

Vietnamese village in Phu Quoc

Phu Quoc Fisher Village Vietnam

Fisher Village in Vietnam Phu Quoc Things to Do

Kids on a boat in Vietnam Phu Quoc Things to Do

Garbage on a beach in Vietnam

Vietnam local beach for village

Idyllic Beach in the north of Phu Quoc Vietnam

Village in Gành Dầu, Phú Quốc, Vietnam

Vespa in Gành Dầu, Phú Quốc, Vietnam

Vietnamese Street Food in Gành Dầu, Phú Quốc, Vietnam

Street Food in Gành Dầu, Phú Quốc, Vietnam

After our little trip we had Vietname Coffee (cà phê đá) in a café in the village. We actually got lost and spent so much time at other places we found along the way up north that we gave it up to continue searching for the hotel haha. It was getting dark already and we had a who-knows-how-long way home. So we just booked the hotel anyway as the reviews were really good and the photos stunning.

Also Cat Monkey enjoyed the little island tour :)

Cat Monkey Mascot Travels the World
Exploring Vietnam on the scooter. Dress like a local!

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Vung Tau is a popular weekend escape from Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) making it quite crowded at the weekends when lots of beach-starving locals are heading down. That said, I found it very pleasant during the week when the beach was way less crowded.

Vung Tau Back Beach, Where to Go in Vietnam

The easiest way to get to Vung Tau from HCMC is by ferry. Just take a taxi to the ferry terminal in HCMC and then take the Vina Express ferry to Vung Tau. The ride from HCMC to Vung Tau takes circa 1.5h and the ticket is between 200,000 and 250,000 VND which includes a little bottle of water that you get on board. The crew is professional, the seats are clean and the journey is really comfy. The Vina Express ferry might even be fine for travellers that get sea sick easily – you barely notice you are on water at all.

We took a taxi from the harbour in Vung Tau to get to our hotel on the Back Beach. Vung Tau has two beaches, the Front Beach and the Back Beach. Whilst both areas have cafes, restaurants and are ‘lively’, it is the Back Beach where you want to head for swimming in the ocean. Though, during the three days we spent in Vung Tau, there were black flags on the beach because of dangerous currents. Depending on the situation, you could still go in until the water is around hip-high and enjoy the dozens of little waves that are constanly coming in – just make sure you are not heading out more. There are also ‘beach clubs’ where you can hang out on the pool. But don’t expect anything fancy. It seems that Vung Tau is trying to get the beach area a bit more developed but hasn’t quite arrived there yet. Also, you barely see any surfers or surf shops. So if you are planning to go there for surfing (apparently sometimes it’s supposed to be quite good there), do your research beforehand or bring your own stuff.

When it comes to things to do apart from hanging out on the beach, there are SPAs, a cinema, lots of restaurants and bars, Karaoke, and a few ‘clubs’.  Just rent a scooter (around USD 7 -10 per day) and start exploring! No worries, the traffic is not even half as bad as in HCMC!

Bottom line: Whilst it is not the nicest beach in Vietnam, if you are in Saigon and up for a quick 1-3 days break on the beach, Vung Tau is a good option. Head down there at the weekend if want to join the nightlife and come during the week only if you’d rather have the beach for yourself.

 

Front Beach, Vung Tau

Vung Tau Back Beach, Where to Go in Vietnam

Vung Tau Back Beach, Where to Go in Vietnam

Vung Tau Back Beach, Where to Go in Vietnam

Vung Tau Back Beach, Where to Go in Vietnam

Vung Tau Back Beach, Where to Go in Vietnam

Vung Tau Back Beach, Where to Go in Vietnam

Vung Tau Back Beach Vietnam

Dolphin Beach Club on Back Beach

As I said, don’t expect anything super fancy. Most of the ‘beach clubs’ don’t look that nice and this one looked like one of the prettiest. We had lunch there which was good, also my Vietnamese coffee was yummy :)

Dolphin Beach Club Vung Tau

Dolphin Beach Club Vung Tau

Cruising around in Vung Tau

Vung Tau Back Beach, Where to Go in Vietnam

Food at Dict Hotel Vung Tau  Front Beach View Vung Tau Vietnam

Vung Tau Vietnam Things to do

Vung Tau Sunset

 

Vina Express Ferry and Vung Tau Harbour

Vina Express HCMC to Vung Tau

Vung Tau, Where to Go in Vietnam

Harbour Vung Tau Vietnam

Vung Tau Harbour. Travel Vietnam

Vung Tau Harbout. Things to do in Vietnam

Vung Tau Front Beach, Vietnam

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We are now in Vung Tau, Vietnam.

Bohoo, looks like there is not so much surfing going on :(.. Guess the surf culture / infrastructure is not that developed yet. Also, the beach is not really the prettiest in Vietnam.. But at least the water is a bit wavy which is fun too.

It’s a Monday today, so the beach is not crowded at all which is makes it a lot nicer! We arrived yesterday and there were lots of Vietnamese families having their own food and drinks on the beach. Plus at least half of the people went swimming almost fully dressed! Yeah, that’s was great beach vibe! Well at least now it’s pretty :)

Just had a Vietnamese coffee (which is just the best coffee EVER) and am hanging out on the pool. Turns out we have rented a scooter. So after a bit more of chilling on the pool & beach, it’s time to explore the area :)

So pretty now:

image

And less pretty and crowded on the weekend :

image

 

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